Lucille Ball seems like she was probably the hardest working actress of all time, based on this book. If you’ve ever really liked the woman or got any sort of joy out of any of her shows, this is a great one to read. I was hoping that it would be lots of small, funny stories about instances in her life - and while there were a few stories like that, the piece really centers around more of the hardships and just her account of growing up and becoming such a success.
There were a lot of memorable parts, so I’ll list a few of them here:
Lucille Ball’s daughter recounting a memory of her mother:
“One of my mother’s favorite things to do, when a small group of people were involved in some ordinary conversation, was to wait until one of them left the room and as soon as she returned, blurt out, convincingly, “Here she is now! Why don’tcha tell her to her face?!!” This was always followed by frozen silence, and then she’d howl (with that depth-of-the-sea laugh she had) to see the look on the poor soul’s face, who for one horrible moment thought someone had been saying terrible things about her while she was gone.”
Lucille Ball’s daughter talking about her parents after their deaths:
“Oddly, in some ways, after all these years, life goes on as if they were still here; simply off somewhere, on location perhaps, and unable to get to a phone.”
Lucy talking about being a teenager:
“All the local kids got summer jobs at the amusement park; I was hired as a short-order cook at a hamburger stand. I took my job seriously and loved earning the money. “Look out! Look out! Don’t step there!” I’d suddenly holler at some person passing by, and as he stopped, startled, one foot in midair and looking worriedly at the ground, I’d continue: “Step over here and get yourself a de-licious hamburger!” This mesmerized a lot of people into buying, and incidentally, they were darn good hamburgers.”
Lucy talking about Carole Lombard:
“She was so elegant; her clothes looked as if they had been poured on her.”
“Dr. Peale helped me realize that our professional achievements are secondary; the important thing in life is our relationship with other human beings. It’s not what we set out to get, but how we go about the daily task of living.”
The woman just seemed incredible. Such a beauty, too. If you’d be interested in reading it, you can most likely get a copy at your library since it came out in ‘97, or you can purchase it here.